Four years ago today, I was heading off to my first day of classes at Bucknell University as a college freshman. I remember I was nervous, excited, and about 20 minutes early for my first class of the day. It is crazy to think that only a few years ago I was starting an important chapter of my life, a chapter that has now been closed. I am on to the next adventure, the chaotic, stressful, frustrating, and exciting postgraduate years. In honor of the fact that I very recently was a bright-eyed college student, I am using this week’s Wordy Wednesday post to focus on a key piece of advice for all those newbie college students out there.
Be All There.
College is only four years long, and trust me when I say the time goes by fast. You will grow and change in ways that you cannot even imagine. You will be academically challenged and forced to determine your best study habits and organization tactics. You will make new friends and also lose some friends. And by the time you put on your graduation cap and gown you will have a better understanding of who you are as a person. In the next few years, in every situation, no matter if it’s an 8am class or a late night party…be all there. Experience everything; do not limit yourself in the slightest. This is your time to try out for new sports teams or get involved in interesting clubs. Don’t just hang out in your dorm room and watch Netflix all day, because trust me when I say you are seriously missing out. College is the time to push your boundaries both academically and socially. Take that interesting course on Downton Abbey (yes, it is a class at my school I swear!) or go out with a new friend you met in the newspaper club. No matter what you decide to spend your time doing, put your all into it.
The biggest trap that I see people, and one that I myself have gotten caught in, is focusing too much on how things should be, rather than how they are. Instead of focusing on the idea you had in your head about a certain club or a night out, accept it for what it is and be entirely there. You may not be able to control a situation but you can control how you respond to it. It is so incredibly important, not only in the next four years of a college experience but also in life that you are fully there. Do not let your expectations of an event hinder the time you could be having. Remember that your college years are filled with experiences you will reflect on for the rest of your life, so you might as well make interesting memories!
I truly believe that Jim Elliot was on to something when he said “Wherever you are, be all there.” For any college freshman who is nervous and looking for a little advice, I think the best tidbit that I can give you is to experience everything to the fullest and to never limit yourself. Take that for what you will and go enjoy the ride, it is going to be an interesting four years! Wherever you are, wherever you go, be all there.